Showing posts with label historical. Show all posts
Showing posts with label historical. Show all posts

Dec 28, 2015

Soon-to-Be Book--Not What You Expect

Many years ago, my first book came out. Macbeth's Niece is a romance set in--well, the time of Macbeth, around 1053. Here is what Five Star Publishing did for its cover.

And here's what I did when the rights reverted back to me and I re-released it as an e-book. Theirs is prettier, but mine shows more of Tessa's fiery personality.



Why did a mystery writer start with a romance?
Well, they say to write what you know, and as a long-time English teacher, Macbeth is very familiar to me.  I always loved the story and felt sorry for Macbeth, who didn't comprehend that things seldom turn out the way you imagine they will until it was much too late.

The story of a girl living at his castle who has her own adventures and comes to the same conclusion (though with a happier ending) seemed to form itself in my head without much effort (though writing it down was a little more difficult.)

I was shopping two books at the time, and two different agents tried to find a publisher. The thriller was never picked up. The romance was. So I became a published romance writer with no intention of ever writing another romance.

But the story of the macFindlaech family wasn't finished. Tessa had several sisters, and their stories kept showing up in my head. I tried writing two of them but was never happy with either one.
Some time ago I came across the files in my computer and realized that the two girls' stories had to be told together. They are twins, and their adventures are more exciting when told as the sisters are separated, struggle against terrible odds, and then are eventually reunited.

It came together well, I think, and Double Toil & Trouble will be released early in 2016. While it isn't my usual fare nowadays, those who liked Macbeth's Niece will enjoy the adventures of Jenna and Jessie, two more nieces of Scotland's former king.

(Cover art here as soon as I get it!)

Jun 1, 2015

Simon & Elizabeth Are Back

At my signing on Saturday, a reader asked about the next Simon & Elizabeth book. Sometimes I feel like I neglect them, but it's mostly because my publisher accepts the manuscripts and then sets a date for release 20 years in the future.

Okay, maybe not 20.

Five Star is an excellent publisher, and they have a large number of authors who keep writing more books, so each submitted manuscript is put into a queue. I sent them the fourth in the series in late 2013 and got June 18, 2015, for my release date. Once I've done the work they require, editing, writing cover copy, etc., that leaves me with well over a year to forget the book exists. So if I haven't mentioned my historical series lately, that's why.

Book #4 is called HER MAJESTY'S MISCHIEF. Elizabeth is now queen, (hence "Her Majesty") and she wants Simon to go to Scotland and form an honest appraisal of Mary, Queen of Scots. The "mischief" in the title might refer to Mary and her plotting, but Elizabeth was no slouch at plotting mischief herself. She's thinking of offering Mary a husband (and not just any husband!), but reports of the Scottish queen's character vary widely. Some say she's sweet and innocent; others say she's a conniving, evil woman. Scholars actually still argue about which impression is most fitting, and the events in the book concerning Mary are true, except that Simon didn't go along because Simon didn't really exist. For our purposes, however, he does, and Elizabeth trusts his judgment. Unlike the rest of the men surrounding her throne, he has no political agenda.

Simon does have an agenda, though. He's recently learned that his brother-in-law was murdered, and being Simon, he wants to investigate. Elizabeth, being his monarch and possessing her father's Tudor stubborn streak, insists on having it her way. While Simon is gone to Scotland (where he gets into all sorts of trouble), his son Henry decides he'll investigate. That, of course, leads to its own set of perils.

The book is up for pre-order on Amazon & Barnes & Noble (maybe others, I just checked those two). So far it's hardcover only, and I have no idea when e-books will be available. They claimed there would be paperbacks this year, but nobody tells the authors the scheduling of any of that. We wait and see just like everyone else.

Apr 13, 2015

Freebie Day 3: April 13, 2015




Her Majesty’s Mischief

Want 2 free copies of this book? I'm giving away two books each day until the release of the 3rd Dead Detective Mystery, DEAD FOR THE SHOW, on April 20. The books are mixed up, so if you want a specific title, watch this spot daily until the one you want shows up. Then respond here or on Peg’s News on Facebook to be entered in the daily drawing.

Yesterday's winner is  Lori C.N. Congratulations!
 
NOTE: This one isn’t out yet, so you’ll have to wait until I get copies, May-ish.


Book #4 of the Simon & Elizabeth series
Setting: Tudor London & Scotland
Elizabeth I sends her loyal friend Simon to Scotland to bring back an honest assessment of Mary, Queen of Scots. While Simon’s away, his wife and son get into hot water trying to solve a murder. Nobody has a good time for a while, but things work out in the end.


Check out DEAD FOR THE SHOW on Amazon, where it's up for pre-order for Kindle and will be available in print one week from today! 


It's Getting Close!

  You might think "Christmas!" when you read that headline, but for me it's the release of SISTER SAINT, SISTER SINNER on Dece...